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more amazing than the miracle on the hudson. the dramatic pictures of a plane crash ahead. boiling point. the latest on north korea's missile threat and the u.s. talks that are ongoing right now in hopes of stopping any nuclear launch. gone. out of the blue. i have heard people say that the tidal wave of anguish our country felt on 12/14 has receded, but not for us. >> a heart-wrenching appeal. will a newtown mother's call for stricter gun control move people in congress? feats of strength not exactly, but what is behind this story that helped to win a war? hello. it is high noon here in the east, 9:00 a.m. out west. welcome to "weekends with alex witt." a powerful and poignant appeal from the mother of one of the sandy hook victims. francine wheeler joined by her husband delivered the white house weekly address today
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pushing congress to pass new gun control measures. their 6-year-old son ben was killed in december along with 19 other children and 6 educators in newtown, connecticut. >> david and i have two sons. our older son, nate, soon to be 10 years old, is a fourth grader at sandy hook elementary school. our younger son, ben, age 6, was murdered in his first grade classroom on december 14th, exactly four months ago this weekend. ben's love of fun and his excitement at the wonders of life were unmatched. his boundless energy kept him running across the soccer field long after the game was over. and it couldn't wait to get to school every morning. we have to convince the senate to come together and pass common sense gun responsibility reforms that will make our communities safer and prevent more tragedies like the one we never thought would happen to us. now is the time to act.
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please join us. you can talk to your senator, too. or visit white house gofg to find out how you can help join the president and get involved. help this be the moment when real change begins. from the bottom of my heart, thank you. >> joining me now, political reporter for "u.s. news & world report," lauren fox, and white house reporter for "the washington post," david nakamura. such an emotional message. when i heard it earlier this morning broadcasting, i could barely get through it. it makes a very strong appeal, but will it have an effect, lauren, on those senators who are against new gun control measures? >> i think we have to look at the history of this issue. you know, we haven't seen broad expensive gun legislation since 1994, and this week when senators voted to continue the debate on gun control, there were 16 republicans who voted to
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continue talking about this issue. a lot of it has to do with the families' appeals. they've been on capitol hill. they were sitting in the senate gallery while the vote was happening, and i think that if anything has made the difference, it is the fact that these parents are going out, talking about this issue. other victims of gun violence are out there talking about this issue, and i think it has made a huge difference so far in what we've seen. >> you know, david, it is the first time that president obama has let someone else deliver the white house weekly address. what was behind this? how did it happen? >> yeah, alex. i think what lauren was saying was right. i think the president recognizes we all remember the dark days after the shooting. the president made that powerful speech in newtown and ever since then, the president and the white house are concerned that as time goes by, there's less political urgency to do anything because people forget and other things take precedence. i think what the president is trying to do, he went again to connecticut the other day. he brought families back on air force one, and now he's let one
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of the mothers speak very emotionally in front of the camera. you saw her tearing up. it looks like they had to cut and do several different shots because she probably was having trouble getting through the speech tp it puts a real face on this. we saw right after the president went up to connecticut more recently to give a second speech up there, that as you guys talked about, the republican -- several republicans did go ahead and vote to block any type of filibuster. i think the president saw that as a good move forward and now they're hoping that that emotional, powerful appeal can continue to give momentum to this cause. >> i have got to say, i chime in with my agreement there. i hope it does, indeed. lauren, your latest article is about a new bill that would expand gun rights for one specific group. what group is this? >> so the manchin/toomey background bill that came out, i'm not sure any republicans would have been able to sign onto the other background bill that was in existence but it expands the gun rights of veterans. and what it does is basically right now veterans can be put
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into the national instant criminal background check system if it's deemed by thev a that they can't reasonable their own finances. this bill, the compromise amendment basically what it does is it gives the veterans an appeals process so they're not automatically registered. some people said just because you can't reasonable your finances doesn't mean you're mentally incompetent and should be put into a background check system and not be allowed to get a gun. >> okay. thank you for that update. let's move to the next thing, the budget, with you, david. the president going all out to try to gain support from republicans having dinner with them wednesday night for the second time now. how long will this process take and how do you think it's going to end? stalemate or grand bargain deal? >> we have been through this the third or fourth time. in the pars two years we have been at these high stakes. it looks like it will go into the summer so another couple months before they have to raise the debt ceiling again or else the u.s. could default on its credit. i think that is the sort of mechanism by which we're going to have more -- somebody is going to have to take some action. the question is how big.
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the president still on this offensive. i think what we have heard from republicans is they're genuinely impressed that the president has gone to these lengths. he's made them feel comfortable in the meetings but the problem is the president in showing good faith to talk about cutting entitlements and social security, he's angered some democrats and he doesn't have a lot of wiggle room now. he's hoping republicans meet him halfway. the problem still is the taxes. the republicans say they raised it in january. the president got what he wanted, albeit less than he want, but they don't want to do that again. let's have the budget cuts without that. i think that's the problem. as much as the president is wining and dining, i think this is where the sticking point will continue to be. >> you talk about no wiggle room. not only does he have critics on the right, he has critics on the left as well. do you think he will be able to win over the critics from his own party? >> i think his political tactic has to be there are people who are very upset on the left. bernie sanders went to the white house, led a protest. he's very frustrated with the president's direction that he's taking on the budget. but if the president goes to
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republicans, comes up with a negotiation, hammers out a deal, brings it back to his democrats, i think it's going to be very difficult for those in his own party to block a grand bargain negotiation. so i think the president's tactic now has to be to be able to get on the same pages a republicans, bring it back to democrats, show them this is what we can do and the onus would turn to the house at that point. i think it would be hard for republicans in the house not to act if the senate agrees with the president. >> david, i also want to take a look at your latest article that has to do with the senate's immigration plan. this week immigration reform advocates held a major rallycap. they said this time it will be different. when and how? >> it looks like tuesday, possibly wednesday, but i think tuesday you're going to see the senate gang of eight, the bipartisan group that's been working privately on a compromise -- a comprehensive bill to reform immigration law will come out with that bill. we've heard a lot about what's in it. but that's going to start the
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real public dialogue, and i think you're doing to see a lot of critics in the conservative side try to amend the bill, maybe water it down and change some of the provisions, including that path to citizenship. i think all eyes are on marco rubio, one of the members of the gang who is deeply conservative and popular among hispanics as well. he's got a critical role to play. he's going to be on all the sunday talk show this is week trying to talk about what's in this bill and we're going to see at least one public hearing next week. so i think the president is hoping to get a bill by the end of the summer and i think you're going to see a lot of negotiating going on but i think a lot of people think this is the right time because of bhand in the election, the support obama got from latino voters and republicans trying to reach out as well to that same voting demographic. >> david, lauren, always good to see you both. >> thank you. now that the senate has voted to debate its first piece of gun control legislation in nearly two decades, we wanted to know what you think of the bill. today our social media question is, are background checks enough in the gun control effort? let's see what you all had to say. there were a lot of you who
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weighed in. carol packer says, no, we need assault and magazine weapon ban too and a ban on target practice and hunting near schools. atlas stumbled writes, what background are they checking? credit, mental health, criminal records? has anyone made this clear? what about hippa? david r. strong tweets, no, background checks are insufficient but we are helpless and the situation is hopeless. sherry cot torn writes, it is a start but not enough. thomas taylor brown writes, why, yes, of course background checks are enough and while we're at it stop signs should be enough too regulate traffic. sarcasm there. thanks for the great responses. you can write to the show anytime on twitter @alexwit or at facebook/al next -- alex witt. secretary of state john kerry is in beijing. during the talks he urged china
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to cut funding to north korea in hopes this will persuade the north to back off on its nuclear threats. jim maceda is in seoul, south korea for us. the mood right now in seoul is what? optimistic? tent tiff? c can you describe what's going on? >> reporter: it's hard to tell. people are so numb from all of this up and down. the tension rising, it falling. it's really hard to gauge, but one thing is certain that it remains extremely calm. there's no panic in the streets. it's ironic that in a country that could be on the brink of war, the people who seem the least concerned are these south koreans. those most in the crosshairs. >> reporter: there's plenty on this peninsula to worry about. north korea's threats of a nuclear strike or the launch at any time of a deadly missile that could hit targets all the way to guam. but at seoul's oldest standing
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market, it's just another saturday. this woman has sold her rice cakes here for 30 years, but lately sales are off. i'm a bit concerned about the threats from the north, she said, but i'm more worried about how all the bad news has hurt my business. like most south koreans, she has lived with the threat of war most of her life. knowing they life within range of north korean artillery or missiles doesn't rattle them. north korea wouldn't think of attacking us, she said, because we have a strong ally in the u.s. they say they've seen it all before. tensions rise with new provocations from an unpredictable north korean tyrant, be it kim jong-un, his father, or grandfather before him. only to calm down until the next crisis. it's all these women know. they're worried more about exams than nuclear rush room clouds. >> look around. everyone is having like a normal life.
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they're like, oh, we're going to school, we're going to study. we're going to do whatever we want. >> reporter: so your friends aren't worried. >> no. >> reporter: but the u.s. and its allies are take nothing chances, despite a strong warning last night from secretary of state john kerry not to launch his missiles, kim defiant maybe listening only to his own generals. it's why as people go about their normal lives, armed forces across the region watch and wait for the worst. and there's a lot of speculation tonight, alex, after the official south korean news agency reported that the constant activity seen for days around the north korea's missile launch site stopped suddenly this afternoon. now, that may mean the launch itself has been delayed or perhaps even postponed, and, of course, that could be a turning point. alex? >> could indeed. nbc's jim maceda in seoul, south korea. thank you, jim. in west coast headlines, how your house might be making you
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sick. and an office politics, toure tells me how prince has remained mysterious after all these years. in office politics, toure tells me how prince has remained mysterious after all these years. [ mom ] with my little girl, every food is finger food. so i can't afford to have germy surfaces. but after one day's use, dishcloths can redeposit millions of germs. so ditch your dishcloth and switch to a fresh sheet of new bounty duratowel. look! a fresh sheet of bounty duratowel leaves this surface cleaner than a germy dishcloth, as this black light reveals. it's durable, cloth-like and it's 3 times cleaner. so ditch your dishcloth and switch to new bounty duratowel.
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some headlines making news out on the west coast. "the l.a. times" has the headline "pastor takes to social immediate i don't to grieve." about how rick warren has spent the last seven days writing online about the suicide death of his son, matthew. in the tribune, it has a front page story about how your home could be making you sick. 30 million homes have problems that could hurt people's health. the problems range from mold in carpets to lead paint to high levels of radon. now to the weather, some areas in michigan saw up to a foot of snow as a winter storm continues to threaten parts of the far north.
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dial dylan dreyer is here with the forecast. i can't believe it's april 13. >> it doesn't feel like it. we are actually talking about another winter storm moving into north dakota with perhaps another foot of snow possible in north dakota and minnesota, too. as we get into monday. so temperatures are well below average by about 20 degrees. it's 33 right now in minneapolis. only 38 degrees in chicago. 50 in new york city. we will see temperatures warm into the mid to upper 50s in the northeast which is closer to average than it is in the northern plains. doesn't look like much right now, but we are going to see that little bit of rain and snow across montana develop into our next big storm system, and it comes with a lot of wind, too. so not only will we end up with about 6 to 12 inches of snow through north dakota and northwestern minnesota where throes winter storm warnings are in effect, but winds will be gusty enough to create those blizzard-like conditions possible tonight and into tomorrow and monday, too. here is a look at the 48-hour
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snowfall totals. about 6 to 12 inches widespread across north dakota and central minnesota with some areas picking up more than a foot of snow. i have been tweeting with some people out that way, and they said they're sick of it and that's an area that's used to the snow. come mid-april it's enough already. we're looking for highs of 40 degrees in minneapolis. 60 in new york city. then on sunday we are actually going to see temperatures get back closer to 70 degrees at least in washington, d.c., but it stays cold in the northern plains. and, you know, unfortunately, alex, really no end in sight to this winter that doesn't want to end out that way. >> so weird. maybe by may? i don't know. check the calendar weatherman. but you have got it. we thank you weatherwoman. thank you so much, dylan. dissent from within. president obama's fellow democrats are speaking out against his budget proposal saying that it gives away too much to republicans on entitlements and would shrink social security checks for senior citizens. joining me now is democrat ink congressman keith ellison,
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co-chair of the progressive caucus. it's nice to see you. thanks for joining us again. >> thank you, alex. >> so you have issued a statement to the president on behalf of the cpc calling the social security changes in his budget, quote, unpopular, unwise, and unworkable. i have quoted you many a time i might add. what would be the impact of this budget in your opinion? >> well, i think the overall budget has certain strengths in it. early childhood education, infrastructure investment, but what he does to change cpi and medicare in his budget is not going to work and we cannot support it. and this pains me because i am a strong obama supporter, worked hard to get him re-elected, but this particular provision make it is impossible for me to support. i mean, the amount of pain that high income earners will suffer because the income tax rates will go to 39.5% if you make over $400,000 is smaller than
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what chain cpi would do to low income seniors. chain cpi is a bad idea, and then they have said, well, we're going to do some patches and some fixes. well, the patches and the fixes don't quite fix everything, and so you're still going to have seniors who are going to get hit hard. and by the way, chain cpi is not for seniors. it's not an accurate measure of inflation for seniors. it's a wage earners' measure of inflation so it's actually misapplied. now, i believe that president obama cares about low income seniors. why are we here then? well, because he thinks that by offering this concession to the republicans, it might induce them to do a grand bargain and lift the sequester. i do think he should be trying to lift the sequester, but this is not an acceptable chit to bargain away and i won't stand with it. >> do you see any way for the
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president to walk this back at this point? >> you know what? i'm sure that the punditry would criticize him if he tried to walk it back, but i think the best thing for him to do is to walk it back. he will endure some criticism, but you know what? it would be far better for him to take a few days of hits, being accused of having walked this back, than for him to stand for a proposition that would reduce the cost of living increase for our seniors, veterans, and many, many others. i mean, it is the smaller pain to walk it back. it would cause some reputational interests, main even a drop in the poll, but so what? i mean, the interests of senior citizens and veterans is on the line here, and i wish he would walk it back and i would recommend that that is what he do. i'm an -- i have been an enthusiastic supporter of the president, will remain so, but if he walks it back, it will make it a whole lot easier for
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me to defend what i think has been a great presidency in many ways. >> has the white house responded to you? >> no. >> did the president leave any room for negotiation on the entitlements? i mean, barring walking it back but going forward? a lot of people have said the wiggle room just is not there. >> well, here is the thing, you know, speaker boehner said that the president's budget was dead on arrival because it contained revenue increases. revenue increases which i think are good. so the here is the problem. the right has not responded to his overture. i mean this chain cpi really isn't his idea. didn't originate with him. it's their idea. he's trying to anticipate their bargaining position by adding it into his own which is i think a negotiating error -- >> but representative ellison, what if the buck stops there with the president. i put this out here, we're going to negotiate on some things but
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not that. this is as far as i go on this? >> well, it's too far already. the bottom line is this is a significant reduction in the cost of living increase for very low income people. the average widow on social security gets about $13,000. i mean, yeah, the average widow on social security gets $20,000, but a third of these people exist on nothing but social security so they get about $13,000. so you're going to ask these people to give up the tiny bit of money that they have? we already got too many seniors at food shelves. we already got too many people who have blazed a trail for all of us younger folks to have a great america and now we're going to tell them the food shelf for you? no way. and i think that in terms of negotiating, he's just got to say, you know, i don't have the support of my party, and i
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cannot move forward on this. again -- i'm sorry. >> no, go ahead, finish it. >> i was going to say, you know, the president has had a great presidency. look, the affordable care act, you know, the consumer products financial bureau. the lili led better fair pay act. there's been a lot of great things. i don't want my president to sell his presidency by putting social security on the table this way and i wish he would walk it back. >> here is something we have to look at another aspect of this. representative paul ryan took a lot of flack for writing his budget with the assumption that obama care would be repealed. president obama's plan is not without his wishful thinking either because it assumes a savings of $1.8 trillion for no military actions over the next decad decade. we all want peace, but is that realistic? >> you know, i think one of the things that the obama administration can feel good about is that they've gotten us out of iraq. we're getting out of afghanistan. and, of course, while you've got
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to always be prepared for contingencies, you know, we are hopeful that he has put a lot of emphasis on diplomacy and development in trying to minimize threats, working multilaterally. if you look at libya and other things. so, you know, while i think it is optimistic, i think if we put a premium on diplomacy, development, and multilateral action, that it might be, you know, somewhat expectable to get some kind of a peace dividend. >> okay. listen, all good if it does. thank you so much representative keith ellison. good to see you. >> thank you. the story behind incredible pictures in bali. why some are saying this was a miracle. copd makes it hard to breathe...
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nation's metropolitan areas. the city with the lowest jobless race, midland, texas, with 3% unemployment. the highest, yuma, arizona. the census bureau's new report on taxes shows states last year brought in the most tax revenue ever. we're talking almost $800 billion. california bringing in the most revenue of more than $112 billion. illinois seeing the biggest increase in tax receipts of almost 40%. i can go out there tonight, the materials you got make myself $15,000. tonight, in two hours. can you? >> well, maybe the folks at should have seen the sales office in glen gary glen ross before naming real estate agent the happiest job in america. that honor coming from an annual survey. justin timberlake has to be happy his new album "the 2020 experience" is the nation's best-seller for three straight weeks. thanks in part to jay-z, of course. those are your number ones on weekends with alex witt. i don't like to golf.
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welcome back to weekends with alex witt. the dramatic scene in bali with more than 100 airline passengers and crew are counting their blessings today. this is new video showing them being helped off the plane after the plane missed the runway during landing and ended up in the water. >> annabelle roberts is in the london bureau. what's the latest on this miraculous state of events? >> it must have been a terrifying experience for all involved. there were more than 100 passengers and crew aboard this airplane and it was a brand new boeing 737 on an internal flight to the island of bali. as you said, eyewitnesses say it was coming in to land when it overshot the runway and felt into the sea. it landed if shallow water just yards from the end of the runway and the fuselage cracked behind
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the wings. one passenger told local tv holes appeared in the floor of the plane and it started to fill with water. another said everyone on board was screaming thinking they would drown. incredibly, every single person was able to escape. you can see in some of the pictures there people in life jackets floating in the water and being rescued. now, they were able to climb out of the aircraft and swim to safety or walk to safety helped by rescuers. most were escorted to the airport terminal where they were treated for their injuries, but a number needed to be taken to the hospital suffering head wounds and broken bones according to paramedics. bali is a very popular holiday destination. it's thought most of the passengers were indonesian and there were two foreigners on board this jet. all, alex, incredibly lucky to have lived through this ordeal of their plane ditching in the sea. >> yeah, absolutely. and fortunately, last word is that none of the injuries are life threatening. so that is even more good news there.
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annabelle roberts from london, thank you. more opposition over entitlement cuts in president obama's budget plan today. earlier i spoke with democratic congressman john yarmuth about what the white house told him and his fellow budget committee members about the social security cuts. >> we had a hearing the other day at the budget committee with the director of the office of management and budget, and basically he said, you know, the reason we put this change in for cpi was because of speaker boehner and leader mcconnell, that they were the two who demanded it be part of any package. so he really didn't endorse the policy so much as saying basically this was our concussion to republican leadership. >> joining me now for today's strategy talk, former vermont governor and dnc chairman howard dean and republican strategist joe watkins who served as a white house aide under president george h.w. bush. >> good to see you. >> governor, your response, the reaction you have to this proposal, what is it? >> i think it's pretty hard to
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make conciliatory gestures to a side that's not interested in con sillation in any way. i think the republicans have still got to sort themselves out. they were just out in hollywood voting to, you know, against gay rights and against women's rights to make their own reproductive decisions. so we don't know what the republican party is. i'm basically not in favor of negotiating with somebody who doesn't know who they are and has not been a good negotiating partner in the past. >> okay. but you know the president is aware of whom he is dealing with. how badly does he want a deal if he's putting social security on the table? >> well, i think he wants a deal pretty badly. i think it would be a good thing to get a deal. there are other things you could do with social security such as raising the amount of money that gets taxed in terms of upper income people paying their fair share. you could also on medicare put people into a pay by the patient not pay by the procedure. that's going to have to happen anyway and that's a lot bigger
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reform and would save a lot more money. we'll see. i think the ball is in boehner's and mcconnell's court. they got something they wanted. let's see what they do with it. >> perhaps, but, governor, if the social security changes go through, the democrats can own the cuts. can they afford that? >> i think it remains to be seen whether the president can get enough democrats to vote for this. we're not going to know of this. this is all speculation until we see what the speaker and the minority leader in the senate come back with if they come with anything, which i doubt they will. >> but i love speculating with you. let's move to joe. as the president concedes on social security but still the republicans, they balk at his plan. how do they possibly say they're not being obstructionist now? >> well, you know, i think the president is doing the right thing. having dinner with republicans, reaching out is a good thing. he needs to spend more time in the second term getting things done and the only way you get things done is to work with both sides, to work with democrats
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and republicans. and the republican party, of course, is still evolving. it's becoming a bigger tent. it's going to become a party that embraces people with lots of different perspectives, with lots of viewpoints and that's going to be a good thing and make this more exciting, a more exciting cycle in 2014 and 2016. in the meantime the president has to do what he started to do which is reach out to republicans and see where there is room for common ground. republicans are always going to be on the side of less revenues and more spending cuts. and so the president knows that going in. but the devil is always in the details. so he's got to see the degree to which he can cobble together something that works for democrats as well as for republicans. >> but, joe, don't the republicans now have to really understand the art of compromise because the president has taken the first step. don't they have to take a step back in his direction? >> i don't know necessarily it's a matter of taking a step back in his direction. i think it's a matter of continuing to talk to see where there is room for agreement and
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when there is disagreement how much room there is to wiggle and to change. you have a $3.7 trillion budget offer by the president. you have a $3.2 trillion offer by house leader ryan. rand paul i think has a $3.2 trillion budget. patty murray has a $3.6 million or $3.7 million proposal. you have to work on the details and figure out where there's room for compromise and not beat each other up. at the end of the day americans suffer when republicans and democrats can't agree. so the ball is in the court of the president and the democrats. he's the president, he controls the white house, he's got the bully pulpit. the ball remains in his court to reach out to republicans. >> joe, i have to say you use the phrase beat you up. to both of you here, i'll begin with you, governor, because the other big debate is gun control. what an emotional week with the families of the gun victims gathering on capitol hill but all that paled in comparison to
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this moring's weekly address from francine wheeler, the mother of one of the children that was killed. >> in the months since we lost our loved ones, thousands of other americans have died at the end of a gun. thousands of other families across the united states are also drowning in our grief. please help us do something before our tragedy becomes your tragedy. >> governor, is that enough to turn the tide in washington? speeches like this? it brought me to tears on the air earlier today. it's so hard to listen to. >> i think it is turning the tide. if you look where the american people are they've moved so fast since newtown, it's shocking to me. i think 89% of the american people believe we ought to have at least the minimum of the background checks which would be the manchin/toomey bill.
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even the majority of the nra members believe we ought to have these improvements in gun safety laws. so i think it's having a big effect. i think the president is doing a great job and i think these survivors who lost their kids are doing an incredible job to make the case to the american people. >> joe, give me your gut check at this. you're a dad. you love your kids as much as anyone i know. i mean, you see this, and as a republican as well, do you find it embarrassing to a degree when there are republicans who don't get moved by this and don't want to stand -- change their positions? >> i think that everybody is moved. i think republicans no matter where they stand on the issue are moved by a plea like the one we heard this morning because it's so heartfelt and so many of us have children and we all love our kids, and what we i think all agree on is the fact that this can never happen again. we don't want to see this ever happen again to anybody's kid anywhere in the united states of america, and whatever we can do to change it we want to do. but the devil, of course,
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remains in the details. you have senator toomey and senator manchin who have come together and cobbled a compromise on the senate side. we don't know what the house is going so say yet. certainly i think what you will find in states who have lots of gun owners who care just as much as governor dean and i do about these kids and about their parents, they're going to say to themselves, we have to make sure at the end of the day that the rights of gun owners aren't trampled on, that you don't trample on the rights of gun owners, and at the same time create an environment that's safe for kids. >> okay. gentlemen, i'll let that be the last word. joe watkins and howard dean, good to see you both. >> great to see you. >> thanks so much. >> who created these pictures and why are they in the news today? is this the art of a killer? in a three-hundred-ton rocket doesn't raise as much as an eyebrow for these veterans of the sky. however, seeing this little beauty over international waters is enough to bring a traveler to tears.
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[ male announcer ] your favorite foods fighting you? fight back fast with tums. calcium-rich tums starts working so fast you'll forget you had heartburn. ♪ tum tum tum tum tums couple of items of note from augusta, georgia, to report. first, in a matter of 90 minutes or so, tiger woods will tee off for the third day of one of golf's premiere events, the master's tournament.
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for a time it was feared he would be disqualified for making a so-called illegal drop, but after conferring with woods, officials decided to assess a two-stroke penalty so disaster averted for tiger. item two enters the history books. this 14-year-old from china is the youngest player ever to make the cut in a professional golf association event. in today's office politics, co-host of "the cycle" toure, e talking about his new book, i would die for you. why prince became an icon. first i asked him about the nation's passionate debate around gun control. >> we are a nation, a political system where the extremes are more in control than the masses because these extremes are more passionate and motivated. that's within congress, just within sort of voting the fringes, the extremes will control who gets nominated, usually who gets elected. we have an unfair fight in terms
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of gun rights versus gun control. we have an nra which is 3 million members, not 4 million or 5 million, but 3 million members, but really it's the gun and bullet industry. the manufacturers fund the nra. they work for them. there's proposals that members don't want, that they are not -- they don't care. it's what the industry wants. the other side is not making money. there's no money in gun control, right? so the when we have people like mike bloomberg or gabby giffords' organization, her pac is being supported by steve jobs' widow. suddenly finally we're getting big pockets on the other side. but, i mean, the differential in expenditure on the gun control versus the gun rights side is multiples of like a hundred in terms of spending on buying senators and congress people, in
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terms of just education and, you know, and i mean we're dealing with these fundamental lies on the gun rights side. i mean, the core one is what do you do when a criminal walks in the door with a gun? very frightening situation that most americans can understand right away, this is a very difficult situation that everybody would be afraid of. and even no matter how lefty you are, you're kind of like, well, at that point i would be okay with you shooting that person. but the data shows that that is a oneer once in a lifetime or less event. and that you, especially you as a woman, are twice as likely to be shot and/or killed by a gun in the hand of a person you know and love, an intimate partner, rather than a stranger. >> this book "i would die for you", why prince became an icon, it's cool. what inspired it?
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>> there's so much to it. he's mysterious. the songs are sort of deep and there's so much i could do in sort of like digging into who he is. >> why do you think he is such an icon? i'm sure you saw the grammys. when he came out on stage like last month or whenever that was, standing ovation, and even just watching i thought, oh, my gosh, it's prince. >> yeah. >> why do i have that reaction? why does everyone have that reaction? >> the talent is off the chart. he was so big for so long. i mean, so much of that question is encapsulated in the book so i could just read the book and then you'd understand. but, i mean, one of the things that is happening, too, is that prince comes from a different era, and when artists were a little bit more shadowed, right, shielded, you didn't know everything about them, right? you didn't have "us" magazine, pictures of them going to the grocery store. you didn't have twitter where they're constantly talking to
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you and, you know, he was ubiquitous in that he's constantly doing a new video, new song, new tour, but there was a mystery kept, right? he's able to give you an image and then sort of go away. >> are you guys friends? you have interviewed him? >> no, no, no, we are not friends. >> but you have interviewed him. >> i have interviewed him. i have spoken to him a couple times. i like him. do i know him? i know him. i think if he saw me he'd be like hey, toure, but not friends. he doesn't like call me, he doesn't like make songs for my show and stuff like that. but i did interview him in 1998, which was pretty exciting which is another reason why i wanted to do this because sort of able to build on ha experience that i already had. >> tomorrow at this time toure is going to tem me why he is praising the associated press over immigration. plus, will he fess up to being the biggest talker on "the cycle"? we'll see. a moment in history you have to see to believe.
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how this helped the united states win a war. >fa@ua÷#-3rw9 hmph! [ female announcer ] charmin ultra soft is so soft you'll have to remind your family they can use less. ♪ charmin ultra soft is made with extra cushions that are soft and more absorbent. plus you can use four times less. hope you saved some for me. mhmm! you and the kids. we all go. why not enjoy the go with charmin ultra soft. tens of thousands of dollars in hidden fees on their 401(k)s?! go to e-trade and roll over your old 401(k)s to a new e-trade retirement account. none of them charge annual fees and all of them offer low cost investments. e-trade. less for us. more for you.
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a new documentary tells the story of a secret group of hand-picked soldiers you may not have known about from world war ii. the film is called "the ghost army" and it's about american gis who tricked the german army into fighting fake battles. here is a clip where the germans think they found the americans. but what they see isn't what they get. >> all signs suggest the attack will come here. but the tanks spotted from the air are 93-pound inflatable dummies. the sounds come from loud speakers. the radio transmissions from a script. >> joining me now, rick barr, the filmmaker behind the upcoming pbs documentary. i love this story. >> thank you so much. >> who were these guys? >> these guys were people who were drafted, a lot of them into
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the army or enlisted in the army and they were brought together to be in this unit. a lot of them were artists. they needed people who could understand visual deception. they brought together artists, including some who went on to become famous including bill blass, elsworth kelly. >> that wasn't five or six tanks they would blow up. there was a huge program. >> they had 1,10 men in this unit. hundreds of inflatable tanks, jeeps, they had radio decision equipment. alex, they would do imperson yation. they would pretend to be another american unit. they would impersonate the generals. head up phony headquarters. >> and that would go out over the loud speakers. >> they would do it in towns in case there were towns. you would have an actual phony headquarters some place so it looks like the sixth armored
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division. it looks like they're really there when they're really 30 miles away. >> it was not without some of its close calls. let's play a little clip when the americans were setting up getting tanks in place and some frenchmen walked by. watch this. oh. that's not the clip we wanted. i guess tough watch. >> it's a great story where some frenchmen see four americans lifting up what looks like a 40 ton sherman tank and they can't quite believe what they're seeing, and they say to the guard what's going on? and he looks at them, the american guard, and he says the americans are very strong. that was the answer. >> something i wonder about is the sonic warfare you talk about because back then the technology to make it sound real, i mean, i always envision sort of that scratching noise and how is it that they made it so authentic that actually soldiers thought they were hearing and eavesdropping? >> they made their own sound
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effects records. old records sound scratchy because they're old. new records sound really good. they made great sound effects records and then they would mikts them to a wire. before you had tape recorders, you had wire recorders and they would record it on a wire and play it back that way and it's great fidelity. i have so many stories of people who thought they were hearing the real thing and yet they're hearing these phony tank sounds on speakers that could broadcast 15 miles. so you could hear these things 15 miles away. as you were uncovering all of the details of this and worked so long to put this together, what was the most inspiring thing for you? you think about it and you think i have got to tell this story. >> well, for me it was the combination that you have this amazing, bizarre, sometimes funny deception mission, but it's combined with the fact that you have all these artists who are also painting and sketching their way across the battlefield and creating a unique vision of world war 2.
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it was a strange and unusual mixture. >> it's going to be an extraordinary documentary on pbs. thank you so much. the new numbers that show how much one thing is changing the way america watches tv. [ male announcer ] away...
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just past 1:00 p.m. in the east, 10:00 a.m. out west. we begin with new developments on secretary of state kerry's trip to beijing. he met with chinese leaders earlier this morning urging them to crack down on north korea in hopes the move will persuade the north to end its brinksmanship with the u.s. and its allies. >> the united states and china remain fully committed to the joint statement of the six-party talks and to its core goal, and that core goal is the verifiable denuclearization of the korean peninsula in a peaceful manner. >> nbc's ian williams is in beijing for us. so with a good evening to you, ian, what was the takeaway during these talks? will china help the u.s. defuse north korea's threats? >> reporter: well, that is still the question. i mean, this was a whirlwind of a day for john kerry meeting all china's top leaders, prime minister, the president, and all the top foreign policy
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officials. now, it ended with a pledge -- with an agreement that both sides will work together for the denuclearization of the korean peninsula. now what's less clear is precisely what that means, what concrete measures china will take. there was no sign, no indication of what immediate pressure china may exert to overcome the current crisis. at a press conference john kerry said he was convinced china is serious and he went on to give a little bit more detail. this is what he had to say. >> we also join together in calling on north korea to refrain from provocations and to abide by international obligations. >> reporter: now, china sf diplomatically they're never one to shout out loud. chinese diplomacy does tend to be quite low key, and in the
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past when they have pressured north korea, almost ten years ago this month, they cut the oil supply, but that was presented as a technical problem with the line. so whatever pressure china does exert, it's unlikely to be well-publicized. it may be low key, but clearly john kerry is leaving here with a belief that china is on board, that china is frustrated, and that attitudes here are changing. and he seems determined to maintain this momentum in order to come back with specific measures. he'd like to see china crack down on the illegal money flow, on banking out of north korea, and clearly send a very sharp message on the need to reduce the tensions. but as i say, very little of that detail did emerge today, alex. >> nbc's ian williams in beijing. thank you so much. just about ten minutes or so i'll be talking with one of america's foremost experts on the north korea situation.
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a powerfully moving and heartfelt appeal today from the mother of one of the sandy hook victims. francine wheeler along with her husband delivered the president's weekly address. the couple's 6-year-old son ben was killed in december's horrific tragedy. the wheelers are now urging the senate to approve new gun control measures. >> until that morning 20 of our children and 6 of our educators gone out of the blue. i have heard people say that the tidal wave of anguish our country felt on 12/14 has receded. but not for us. to us it feels as if it happened just yesterday, and in the four months since we lost our loved ones, thousands of other americans have died at the end of a gun. thousands of other families across the united states are also drowning in our grief.
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>> nbc's kristin welker is at the white house for us. kristin, is this the first time someone else has given the weekly address in place of president obama? >> reporter: this is the first time that the president has handed his weekly address over to a civilian, and based on our records, it appears as though it's the only time that this has really ever happened, alex. i can tell you that the white house asked francine wheeler to deliver the weekly address. she agreed to do it. of course shall ths sort of a part of the white house's full-court press to pressure congress to take action on tougher gun laws. the wheelers taped that in the library here of the white house, and she sat down and wrote that with her husband. so those are francine wheeler's and david wheeler's own words. they were among the families on capitol hill this week pressing congress, pressing senators to move forward with tougher gun laws. it appears as though those conversations did work because, of course, the senate moved forward.
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they took a small but significant step. they essentially allowed debate to begin on new tougher gun measures. and, again, those families, a x alex, went from senator to senator sharing their painful stories. here is a little bit more of what francine wheeler had to say in the weekly address. take a listen. >> sometimes i close my eyes and all i can remember is that awful day waiting at the sandy hook volunteer firehouse for the boy who would never come home. the same firehouse that was home to ben's tiger scout den 6. but other times i feel ben's presence filling me with courage for what i have to do for him and all the others taken from us so violently and too soon. please help us do something before our tragedy becomes your tragedy. >> reporter: now, the new laws would expand background checks.
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the national rifle association saying that would infringe upon the rights of law-abiding citizens but polls show about 90% of american citizens support expanding background checks. i'm one of them. thank you very much. joining me now, "washington post" reporter emily heil and msnbc contributor and political editor for the grio perry bacon, jr. listen to that. it's so hard to listen to this. the unprecedented level, emily, that this is putting out there. the president, he's not doing his weekly address this week. he's giving up his space to speak to the nation for these newtown parents. put this in perspective for us. >> i think that this parent, is a much better messenger of what the white house is trying to convince congress of right now. i think she's a very effective messenger. you can't -- you almost can't listen to that without feeling that lump in your throat and as was just mentioned, these parents and these families have been visiting on capitol hill this week, and they've been
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giving that same sort of raw emotional message. some of them have even been leaving behind pictures of the loved ones that they lost in these shootings, adorable, beautiful pictures of children, and i can't imagine that senators can meet with these families and see these images and hear these stories in these intimate settings as well and not feel something. so i think that they've been very effective lobbyists for the white house this week and i think it was a smart move to -- for him to let them use that platform of this weekly address. >> perry, do you think this is going to change anyone's minds on capitol hill? >> i really think it could. this is a big shift we're seeing. before the biggest voices for gun control legislation were president obama and michael bloomberg. and it's very easy for a senator to tell michael bloomberg or president obama i don't like this bill, it doesn't work for my state, i might lose re-election if i vote for it. i think it's very, very hard if
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a family member speaks on camera or comes to your office to make those same kinds of excuses. i think they really do shape changes in the debate. you have heard senators saying these family members did change how i thought about the issue. joe manchin said that himself. i think they could change this debate. >> emily, the associated press has a new article that says the proposed gun measures have put some moderate senate democrats in a bind, specifically those in the more conservative states like mary landrieu of louisiana, kay hagan of north carolina. here is the quote. either they stick with president obama and give an opening to campaign challengers and the nra to assail them or they stand with conservative and moderate gun owners back home worried about a possible infringement on thash rights. how does the president, emily, win these senators over without causing a potential backlash from their constituents? >> he might not be able to. he did spend some time as my colleagues reported today on the
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phone with senator begich talking to him, trying to convince him and talking to him about what he'll be doing. this is going to be a perilous week for these red state democrats. they are running next year in states that mitt romney carried in the last presidential election. so this is a very perilous week for them. there's going to be a lot of amendments on the senate floor, not just the background checks, but it looks like other measures that could even possibly expand gun ownership or loosen rules on gun ownership. so there are a lot of measures they're going to take votes on and any one of those could end up in a 30-second commercial during their campaign that could be very damaging. >> yeah. although at least expanding gun ownership, i believe that one is specifically targeted to military veterans for what that's worth. perry, i want to talk to you about your latest article. it's about gop senator rand paul's speech at howard university this week. that's obviously a historically black school there. there were some awkward moments like this one.
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>> i mean, how many of you would -- if i would have said who do you think the founders of the naacp are, do you think they were republicans or democrats? would everybody in here know they were all republicans? >> yes. >> all right. you know more than i know. and i don't mean that to be insulting. i don't know what you know and you don't -- i mean, i'm trying to find out what the connection is. >> you know, your latest article, perry, is titled "can the gop court blacks without changing policies?" can they and what did you make of his appearance. the appearance is really interesting. i talked so some students and they were really happy he came. they felt they learned about a person they read in the news and they felt better about him than they did before. to be fair, they are absolutely not thinking about voting for rand paul anytime soon. my article talked about the fact that if you look at how the republicans are appealing to latino voters, you have seen over the last four months, the republicans are basically reversing their view on immigration. before they were sort of opposed
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to comprehensive immigration. they have made a big change to win the hispanic vote. if you look at the african-american vote, the republicans have not won more than 12% of the black vote in the last four elections. they had less than 12% in the last four elections, that's even before obama. john kerry, al gore also won 90% of the black vote. if you look at what the republicans' pack titactics are aren't interested in changing their policy views. rand paul's speech was full of look how great abraham lincoln was. they're not sure the republican party today is where they want it to be. >> we should say the students, they were not hostile in that audience. they were challenging -- >> they were very polite. >> absolutely. it was a good discussion. something interesting to observe there. perry, emily, thank you both. one of the foremost experts
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secretary of state john kerry is in china today where he's meeting with the country's top leaders in an effort to persuade them to pressure north korea to halt its nuclear threats and agree to negotiations. joining me now is former u.s. ambassador to south korea, christopher hill, who served as assistant secretary of state for east asian and pacific affairs under president bush. welcome, ambassador. thank you for joining me. >> thank you. >> in your capacity at the state department, you headed the nuclear negotiations with north korea. did you find this to be a government willing to negotiate? >> well, it was very tough. i mean, what we did though was we had a six-party process. we had china in the chair. and every day we worked together with the chinese and described
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it as our common endeavor and the purpose would be to get the north koreans to relinquish their nuclear weapons and finally in september, 2005, they agreed to do so. and since then it's been a heavy slog to try to get them to implement that pledge. >> what do you think north korea is looking for here? right now does it simply want concussions on sanctions? >> you know, i think the quick answer to that is i don't think they know what they want. they seem to want some sort of security. we put that all on the table, including a peace treaty, but they weren't interested in the end. they seem to want some sort of respect. but every day with this kind of buffoonery, that seems to be more and more elusive. so i don't think they really know what they want and i think that's what makes it so difficult to negotiate with them. >> so the level of tension that is apparent right now, is this unprecedented or have you been to this level of brinksmanship before? >> this is pretty unprecedented. i mean, there have been real low
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points in the relationship with north korea. you recall in the 1970s, they ax murdered a couple of our soldiers in the demilitarized zone so there have been hideous moments but i don't think we've had a moment where the north koreans are threatening everything, including us, with nuclear annihilation. i would put it up at the top of the scale. >> how concerned are you that the threats of nuclear annihilation are legitimate, that north korea is even capable of doing it or is this just bluster? >> yeah. as your question implies, i completely agree that there's a lot of bluster here. yes, they have a missile program. yes, they have a nuclear program. yes, this is absolutely something we need to be concerned about, but i think the real danger here is the problem of miscalculation on the demilitarized zone or offshore, and by the way, the south koreans, they have had to sit -- live next to these people for many decades, and i think they've kind of had enough of this. so i think the real concern is
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the north koreans would misunderstand the signals they're receiving from the rest of the world. these are people who really don't have a strong sense of how they're coming across, and so the concern would be they try some provocation to make themselves look tough and then the south koreans react and then what would be the reaction to the reaction? >> exactly. >> that's the real concern here. >> but, ambassador, april 15 may come and there may be some sort of a missile launch. it's a significant day there in their history. if that were to happen, is that an attack or just a display? >> i would put it in the display category, especially if it is, indeed, a missile test. now, usually when they've done missile tests, they've done mariner's warnings and that sort of thing. they haven't done that kind of stuff but we would know the instant the missile takes off whether it's destined to splash in the water somewhere or
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whether it's aimed at somebody and we would take appropriate actions. >> where does that line fall, sir? at what point would we take appropriate action? >> oh, i think if that missile comes anywhere close to land, whether in japan or south korea, i think we would absolutely have to take appropriate actions and do so instantly. so i think we're prepared for that. i think we have some of the highest technology. best technology in the world. one of the effects of all of this bluster from the north koreans with respect to their missiles has been to thicken up our anti-missile defense. this certainly doesn't come as good news for the chinese, and perhaps this is part of the motivation for china to try to tamp this thing down. >> the appropriate action that the united states might take, sir, how devastate would go that be for north korea? >> well, i think appropriate action would be to try to defend against the missiles with anti-missile defense. i'm not talking at this point about retaliation. i don't want to speculate on what we would do in retaliation
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should a north korean missile hit one of our allies except to say that we are treaty-bound to defend those allies a. an attack on south korea or japan is an attack on us. i think we would do what is absolutely required of us in our treaty relationships. it could be very severe. >> i'm sure you've been following secretary kerry on this critical mission in china. what is your sense of how concerned china might be about the situation? >> you know what is interesting about china in recent weeks, even months, is that the chinese seem also to be losing their patience. you know, north korea is a complicated problem for them. it's rooted in their history. it's rooted in their system. when north korea is involved, it affects internal chinese politics. chinese politics with respect to their communist system versus their capitalist economy. chinese politics with respect to what north korean refugees could mean in china. so this is a big deal for the chinese. so i think it's been very
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important to get secretary kerry there to sit with them, to reason with them, to talk about our aspirations for resolving this issue, and to try to turn this terrible issue of north korea into a kind of win/win vis-a-vis the chinese and that's been i think the real task and i hope this is not his first and last visit but rather the first of many and frequent visits to china. >> it may be very difficult to get inside the mind of kim jong-un but he is a new and inexperienced north korean leader. has he put himself in a position where he can't back down now? he must perhaps make some sort of military move? >> yeah, climbing into his mind is quite a feat, so i'm not sure i can do that, but i do believe that he's kind of, to mix a metaphor, painted himself into a corner here and i don't think he really knows how to get out of it. to be a north korean is to be totally isolated and to have all kinds of misconceptions about how you're coming across in the
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world. you know, not unlike some individuals that we may work with, they have no idea how they're coming across. i think this is the problem. he doesn't realize perhaps the dimension, the degree to which he's painted himself into this corner and i think that is is what make it is difficult to come out of it. but to me it's very clear, we are not going to be paying north korea to get out of the corner that they've painted themselves into. if they want to come back and talk about their obligations under the 2005 denuclearization agreement, we're prepared to do that but we're not prepared to deal with them as somehow, you know, the world's new nuclear state. >> ambassador christopher hill, thank you for your time. i appreciate it. today one famous south korean says he hopes the north watches his latest work. that's ahead. [ mom ] 3 days into school break and they're already bored.
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taxation and new mcworld order. joining me is morgan brennan. let's start with the retail slump. even the cheaper gas prices couldn't get people in the stores last month. what does it mean for the economic recovery? >> it means the economic recovery is not looking as strong as economists were hoping at the beginning of the year. americans have surprise been tightening their belts and not spending as much as anticipated at the beginning of the year. the consumer department released their retail sales numbers and americans have pulled back on spending despite those gas prices dropping and actually the stock market rally. i think that there's a couple reasons for this. the first is the weather and the second is actually the fact we've seen tax hikes, payroll taxes increased, for example. i think a lot of americans are feeling not quite as confident about the economy. >> here is something interesting on tax reports. the math here from the pew research center, that doesn't add up because it says as many as a third of americans actually enjoy doing their taxes? can you explain this one to me? >> a third of americans might enjoy doing their taxes, but if you look at a quinnipiac
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university poll that took place earlier this week, two-thirds of americans do not like doing their taxes and they actually hire professionals to do it. they find the tax code is much too complicated. many are in favor of closing some of the tax loopholes we have seen to better decrease the rate of taxation across the board. so that's a topic we've been seeing since the presidential elections and it all comes on the heels of a rather rough tax season. we have seen the sequester has caused delays in refunds and we have companies like h & r block who earlier this year had a software glitch that caused a delay in refunds. >> what about mcdonald's? ordering fast food even quicker? how does this work? >> mcdonald's is actually implementing what they call a dual point counter system. so this is kind of like if you have ever been to an in-n-out burger. you go to the first counter and put your order in. you get a numbered receipt and wait for your number to be called. you go to another counter or
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another end of the counter to pick up your food. the idea here is to increase customer satisfaction, increase efficiency, and it's good that mcdone 23458d's is doing that. we have seen their u.s. sales decline since last year. we've seen earnings kick back and not as strong as usual. this is one of the ways of getting mosh examiners into stores. >> yeah. in-n-out burger, the best. just saying, so good. morgan, thank you so much. >> thank you. and now look who is back. ♪ that a psy unveiling his new mice music video. the video is already racked up more than 1 million views but that's a far cry from the record 1.5 billion views of gangnam style. that might be hard to beat. a major change in the way americans are watching tv. zap technology. arrival. with hertz gold plus rewards,
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welcome back to weekends with alex witt. 33 past the hour with the stunning pictures of this morning's plane crash off bali. you see the passengers being helped out of the plane after it skidded off the runway and ended up in the sea. all passengers survived the ordeal. a number of them were taken to the hospital where they were treated for nonlife-threatening injuries. the pictures are crazy. back at home the artist formerly known as jodi arias will -- this is reportedly painted by the same hand that stabbed, slashed, and shot her ex-boyfriend. arias might also be quite active on twitter. nbc news has more on the admitted killer's busy life. >> were you crying when you were stabbing him? >> reporter: 15 weeks into the murder trial of jodi arias, many thought they'd seen it all.
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graphic details of her shooting former boyfriend travis alexander and stabbing him 27 times. steamy details of their sexually charged relationship. and a confession from the soft-spoken arias that her crime was committed in self-defense. >> did you kill travis alexander on june 4th, 2008? >> yes, i did. >> why? >> the simple answer is that he attacked me. >> reporter: but this week the drama extended beyond the courtroom into social media. a twitter account in jodi arias' name quickly gained more than 20,000 followers. former arias jail mate donovan baring told nbc news she speaks to arias every night and tweets on her behalf. arias' lawyers did not return calls for comment. the account sometimes swipes at prosecutor juan martinez's fiery courtroom style with tweets like, hmm, anger management
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problems, anyone? two days ago the account was even used to promote a website selling artwork by arias including portraits of frank sin na tri and grace kelly. this one listed for over $3,000. >> obviously, it seems unethical or distasteful and doesn't sit well with many people. however, she does have the right to do that and let's remember, she hasn't been convicted. >> reporter: a key defense witness and domestic violence expert added more color to the courtroom this week with her biting banter with attorneys. >> if you were in my group i would ask you to take a time-out, mr. martinez. >> reporter: even the jury box couldn't avoid the turmoil. on friday the judge dismissed juror number 11 citing health issues. the second juror to be dismissed in as many weeks. and experts agree this trial is still far from over. nbc news, los angeles. experts on the world's
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population now to counting heads. the census bureau has recently released its newly updated population clock in which it shows the u.s. population currently at more than 315 million. that's an increase of more than 2 million since july 4th of last year. the world's population is closing in on 7.1 billion with china still the most populous country with more than 1.3 billion people. the halls here at rockefeller center are lined with some of the most legendary studios in the history of television but those days may be changing. a new report finds netflix is the most watched television cable network in the last three months. their 33 million customers streamed 4 billion hours of content with the average person watching 87 minutes every day. joining me now is peter kafka, senior editor for all things digital. this is fascinating to me with a welcome to you, peter. what do you think is driving this ship? >> netflix would say we have a
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lot of things people want to watch and they're happy to pay 8 bucks a month. we told you they'd want to watch a lot of this. wall street didn't believe it. they want to take some credit for "house of cards." this is how people want to consume tv. they want to binge watch whenever they want and this is a popular way of doing it. >> i'm going to pick up on 8 bucks a month. do you think that's part of it? it's cheaper than subscribing to cable. >> well, there's a lot of debate about are these guys cutting into cable tv? are people watching netflix instead of cable. netflix says, no, i think most people who watch us are also getting cable tv. we're just another 8 bucks a month. it's just like getting hbo. >> how do they make their money? do they do it beyond the subskrangs charges? >> they make the bulk of their money from subscription charges. they make money in the u.s., they lose money because they're expanding internationally. if it's just the u.s., it's a profitable business. >> what does a zreming model
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mean for advertiser. >> for netflix there is no advertising. it's purely subscriber supported. a lot of other folks are trying to figure out how to make money from advertising or marrying the two models. >> do you think their goal is to eventually become a full-fledged studio? you mentioned this "house of cards" and it's doing very well. >> they say it's doing well. they haven't released numbers so we don't actually know how it's doing. there's another new series coming out called "hemlock grove." the following month they're rebooting "arrested development." they're going to keep rolling he's out sort of like hb o. they go back and forth saying this is our future versus this is a test we're playing around with. a lot of what people are watching are repeats of old shows, older movies. >> do you think there will ever be a return to these must-have viewing nights, tv series, shows when you had people watching, s
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"the cosby shows and seinfelds. >> it's still happening. netflix says people want to watch this stuff when they want to watch it. it's cutting up shows into individual nights and making you wait every week to watch them is having to read a novel in parts. no one wants to do that. but when "game of thrones is on" lots of people i know are talking about watching it that nate. they are still watching it in much smaller numbers. >> "downton abbey". >> it is pretty fascinating. >> thank you for joining me. appreciate it. let's get a quick check on what's coming up next. to you, mara. >> good afternoon, alex. as immigration reform hits capitol hill next week and border security hangs in the balance, we talk to the congressman who oversees much of that border to get a reality check. plus a new film premieres tomorrow on msnbc about the
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young people in the middle of the immigration battle. and growing up emanuel. we'll talk to rahm emanuel's brother zeke about his family's impressive legacy on politics and pop culture. thank you. the uproar over beyonce and jay-z's trip to cuba. did critics pull a false alarm? [ shapiro ] at legalzoom, you can take care of virtually
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that's why we designed our newest subaru from the back seat forward. introducing the all-new, completely restyled subaru forester. love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. it is time for the big three and today's topics, a mother's appeal, to cuba with love, and best week worst weeks. we're bringing in the panel. staff writer erin car moan, susan del percio and morris reed, our saturday regular. good to see you all. this has been something else today listening to francine wheeler whose 6-year-old son ben was killed at sandy hook. we'll play part of what she said by delivering the white house weekly address earlier today.
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take a listen. >> we have to convince the senate to come together and pass common sense gun responsibility reforms that will make our communities safer and prevent more tragedies like the one we never thought would happen to us. now is the time to act. please join us. you can talk to your senator, too. or visit to have find out how you can join the president and get involved. help this be the moment when real change begins. from the bottom of my heart, thank you. >> okay. so you hear reports, susan, that republicans may want to filibuster moves on gun control. after you hear something like this, don't you think it's hard to reconcile that? you hear this, it tugs at your heartstrings and yet you want to
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push forward? >> absolutely. i think it was messages like this and testimony that allowed them not to filibuster, to even get the bill on the floor. that's why 16 republican senators did go along. ironically two democrats did not go along. that's because they have tough re-elections in red states this year, but this appeal has been tremendous. it really does move the needle because once you have this, it is hard to go back and look at people's faces when -- because this woman represents everybody. whether you had a child or grandchild, whatever it is, you can connect to this woman and it's like, it's time to at least have the vote and if you -- i think it's hard to vote against background checks, but even if you are, you better have the vote. >> yeah. erin, do you think this is going to change people's minds? >> i think the reality is that people really respond on a human level to story telling more than they do to statistics. that was incredibly moving to listen to miss wheeler and there's a natural human impulse to move on and forget about
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things. there's already a short enough attention span that, again, you have the senate filibuster threat. so i think if anything can help president obama and mrs. obama have also been talking about hadiya pendleton and the violence in chicago. this human level story is hopefully going to move people in a way that statistics have not. >> but it's having a -- it's everybo everybody's face, not having a politician's face. >> morris, your reaction to this when you heard it? >> powerful. it really tugs at your heart when you see a mother who really struggled through that. you see the human side, and i also think it's powerful that the president stepped out of the way and let this family do this. i think it will go down as one of those moments in history. >> yeah. and i have to say, i have also learned that she wrote her script there, the mom did, francine wheeler, she wrote it and delivered it and god bless.
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>> that's why it was probably so powerful. >> we'll switch gears with our next topic. to due ba with love. i love that. white house press secretary jay carney took sod questions about beyonce and jay-z's recent trip to cuba after jay-z made a rap about it. >> jay-z released a rap today. i know the other day you said pressure ri was the one that cleared the trip. he suggested he got white house clearance and that he personally spoke with the president. i'll just quote, i turned havana into atlanta, boy from the hood, i got white house clearance, obama said, quote, chill, you gonna get me impeached. you don't need this expletive anyway, chill with me on the beach. >> i guess nothing rhymes with treasury. because treasury offers and gives licenses for travel, as you know. it's a song, donovan. the president did not
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communicate with jay-z over this trip. >> so what is the takeaway from all this, irin? >> the white house press corps is asking the tough questions so far as i can see. the president has a favorite jay-z lyric he likes, it's brush that dirt off your shoulder. thtion this is a tempest in a teapot. the idea there was some sort of conspiracy which some elected officials have suggested is silly. i mean, i have dealt with treasury to go to cuba. it is actually a remarkably simple process. there's no there there. >> and, in fact, treasury did sign off on this, susan, but you have a couple republicans and that was representative mario diaz bellard and ileana ro ros-lehtin ros-lehtinen. >> i can see them trying to play to a certain constituency, but in the scream scheme of things
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nothing. it is relatively easy to go to cuba. they went to cuba on vacation. like okay, next. there's going to be something more important to discuss. >> i should think. what about lessons? can we learn anything here? do you want to given us a socrates sort of interpretation ofdoes. and frankly, it's say there americans are having a market that's so close to us that our businesses can not sell and do business with. so it if there's anything, any lesson here is that jay-z has turned us into a commercial opportunity that i hope the white house will seize upon and allow small and medium-sized business to do trade with cuba. it is a great place to do business. >> what do you think the likelihood of that happening is, morris? >> as long as we have folks on the republican side and frankly, folks on the democratic side that want to continue to politicize this, it won't happen. i think as the castro regime starts to fade away, you will see a change in attitude. and again, we need more open markets for americans to trade and do business.
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cuba is so close, yet we are not doing any business with them. is really absurd. >> what do you think, susan? >> there is certainly going to be an opportunity, my guess is as morris is right, as you see the regime change go on, but it is also a very poor country. they could become wealthier with our economic development there >> okay. thoughts? >> the e barring go hasn't worked. people from human rights perspective, more direct engagement, what the younger generation of cubans is responding to, that separating families, obama has rightfully eased some of those restrictions, that direct engagement is going to be much better than what has failed as a policy. >> okay. sit tight, guys, in just a moment, the big three's best and worst includes a pop star who gained fame for just wanting to be fun. blast of cold feels nice. why don't you use bengay zero degrees? it's the one you store in the freezer. same medicated pain reliever used by physical therapists.
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we are back with the big three and their best and worst of the week, so let's go,
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morris, to you, begin with your best and worst. what you got? >> my best week goes to john kerry, he looks fantastic running around the world doing his diplomacy thing. it looks like he is making headway in a few markets, god bless him. hopefully the job done. my loser of the squeak u.s./russia relations, seems like we are on the wrong track dealing with moscow, a country we need dealing with north korea, china, syria. we need to figure out a way to work better russia. >> how would we do that? >> well, i think, number one, we should have dialogue instead of having rules and lists and really disrespecting a sovereign nation. we need to have more communication. putin is not a bad person. try to make him into an evil empire. we need more dialogue with russia and not less. >> irin?
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>> my nick pinellas county is the nra. even a watered down background check bill is reasonable, they define the other end of the debate, more guns, not fewer, they have successfully controlled the way this has gone down, even though it looked like there was potential for gun safety legislation last year. losers of the week, progress, kentucky, liberal affiliated super pac that was trying to unseat mitch mcconnell, possibly broke some laws in the process. we shall see. they are under investigation. instead of making the story about mitch mcconnell's policies, they made him look like he was sympathetic being undermined. >> victimized. susan, yours? >> winner of the week is dealmaking in washington. i actually think seeing immigration reform go forward, even though it is a watered down gun would be great and loser, steve cohen tweeted about cyndi
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lauper. >> that is a wrap of "weekends with alex witt." see you back here at noon eastern. up next, mara shia virginia campo. have a great day. i woke up with this horrible rash on my right side. an intense burning sensation like somebody had set it on fire. and the doctor said, cindie, you have shingles. he said, you had chickenpox when you were a little girl... i said, yes, i did. i don't think anybody ever thinks they're going to get shingles. but it happened to me. for more of the inside story, visit
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Weekends With Alex Witt
MSNBC April 13, 2013 9:00am-11:00am PDT

News News/Business. New.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Us 28, China 22, North Korea 17, U.s. 12, John Kerry 8, Cuba 8, America 8, Francine Wheeler 8, Boris 6, Alex Witt 5, Joe 4, United States 4, Alex 4, Nbc 4, Buk 4, Obama 4, Perry 4, Seoul 4, Beijing 4, North Dakota 4
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